Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

Talk me into or out of the Takahashi FC100-DF

  • Please log in to reply
239 replies to this topic

#101 SonnyE

SonnyE

    Vanguard

  • -----
  • Posts: 2,299
  • Joined: 01 Nov 2015
  • Loc: Cali for ni a

Posted 14 January 2020 - 06:35 PM

Well then, buy it.

 

No worries. If you don't like it, you can donate it to Sonny's Sleepy Dog Observatory for wayward astro equipment.


Edited by SonnyE, 14 January 2020 - 06:38 PM.

  • Defenderslideguitar and rkelley8493 like this

#102 ken30809

ken30809

    Mariner 2

  • *****
  • Posts: 225
  • Joined: 03 Sep 2009
  • Loc: Midwest

Posted 14 January 2020 - 06:49 PM



Thanks to everyone for all the helpful responses waytogo.gif  I decided to go through with placing an order for the FC-100DF optical tube, Takahashi Clamshell ring, and Losmandy 7" dovetail.

Shout out to the guys at Woodland Hills [telescopes.net] for being very helpful applause.gif   Daniel called me this morning and helped me pick the correct clam shell for this model and let me know it would be shipping out today laugh.gif  

I think I'll wait until the scope comes to decide if I want the other items on my Wish List. Those items are the Feather Touch Micro-Pinion Assembly, Takahashi 6x30 Finder Scope, and the Baader ClickLock visual back.

The mounts I am considering are the Vixen Porta II, Stellarvue M2C, TeleVue Gibraltar HD4 [I heard some negative comments about it, but it's a really good looking mount, so I kept it on the bottom of the wish list], iOptron AZ Pro, and the Losmandy AZ8 Dual Saddle. Can anyone recommend on those or know any better ones [under $1000]? I am leaning towards the Stellarvue M2C. I really like the iOptron AZ Pro, but it looks kind of bulky for a "grab & go" mount, plus the Stellarvue is about half the price question.gif

The SV M2C mount is my choice for 'Grab and Go' for my Tak DL and the AZMP is my 'at home' mount (with pier) for it. I also use my larger (heavier) SV125 Access on the M2C and it handles the approximate 22 lbs very well. But for the Fc100DL, SV 50mm finder, 95mm clamshell, and other accessories, the M2C is great IMO. You really can't go wrong I don't think.

 

PS - Congratulations on your purchase!


Edited by ken30809, 14 January 2020 - 06:50 PM.

  • YAOG, Defenderslideguitar and rkelley8493 like this

#103 rkelley8493

rkelley8493

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1,900
  • Joined: 19 Jan 2019
  • Loc: Southeast USA

Posted 14 January 2020 - 06:59 PM

Did you get the Takahashi clamshell specific Losmandy adapter ring? 

What do you mean the adapter ring? I thought the plate would attach to the threaded holes on the bottom of the clam...



#104 Ihtegla Sar

Ihtegla Sar

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 563
  • Joined: 02 Apr 2019
  • Loc: Pacific Northwest

Posted 14 January 2020 - 07:27 PM

Whoa, $120 bucks to avoid buying a better non-Tak finder? YIKES! 

Yep, I did say it wasn't a cheap solution. lol.gif  I already had the Tak 6 by 30 straight through finder when I decided I needed a way to convert it into a right angle solution.  Otherwise I am not sure I would have gone that route.  But it is nice to have options.


Edited by Ihtegla Sar, 14 January 2020 - 07:29 PM.

  • YAOG likes this

#105 25585

25585

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Posts: 9,932
  • Joined: 29 Aug 2017
  • Loc: In a valley, in the UK.

Posted 14 January 2020 - 07:36 PM

Farpoint make Tak specific bars https://www.adorama....arftak01dp.html

otherwise an ADM clamp on a standard bar is an option https://www.admacces...kahashi-mounts/



#106 John Huntley

John Huntley

    Mercury-Atlas

  • ***--
  • Posts: 2,705
  • Joined: 16 Jul 2006
  • Loc: SW England

Posted 14 January 2020 - 07:41 PM

With regards to the finder, I use a Synta 6x30 RACI finder with my FC-100DL. I use the Tak finder mount (which happens to fit the Synta finder just fine) and an ADM adapter to make it a quick release unit:

 

P1060850.JPG.8bdb73e825ceb1012288d9db83f


  • Tyson M and mikeDnight like this

#107 YAOG

YAOG

    Vanguard

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,401
  • Joined: 12 Oct 2015
  • Loc: Southern California

Posted 14 January 2020 - 07:51 PM

What do you mean the adapter ring? I thought the plate would attach to the threaded holes on the bottom of the clam...

WHC&T link to Losmandy Takahashi Clamshell Ring Adapter  It is a black anodized aluminium ring the exact size of the step in the base of the Takahashi clamshells that provide a wider support base of the clamshell on a Losmandy D dovetail. A small but nice detail for the dovetail to clamshell interface.  


  • 25585 likes this

#108 YAOG

YAOG

    Vanguard

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,401
  • Joined: 12 Oct 2015
  • Loc: Southern California

Posted 14 January 2020 - 07:54 PM

Yep, I did say it wasn't a cheap solution. lol.gif  I already had the Tak 6 by 30 straight through finder when I decided I needed a way to convert it into a right angle solution.  Otherwise I am not sure I would have gone that route.  But it is nice to have options.

Oh, I guess if you already have the 6x30 and don't want to blow another $200+ for a Stellarvue 9x50 and Takahashi finder stalk spending $130 might make sense in a Takahashi sort of way LOL. 



#109 rkelley8493

rkelley8493

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1,900
  • Joined: 19 Jan 2019
  • Loc: Southeast USA

Posted 14 January 2020 - 08:06 PM

WHC&T link to Losmandy Takahashi Clamshell Ring Adapter  It is a black anodized aluminium ring the exact size of the step in the base of the Takahashi clamshells that provide a wider support base of the clamshell on a Losmandy D dovetail. A small but nice detail for the dovetail to clamshell interface.  

Is it necessary or just a better support piece?



#110 Daniel Mounsey

Daniel Mounsey

    Vendor (Woodland Hills)

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 7,868
  • Joined: 12 Jun 2002

Posted 15 January 2020 - 08:37 AM

Hi to everyone here,

My father is in the hospital and not well and I've had little time to post and it's been a very difficult time. I just wanted to take a moment to discuss these clam ring and dual ring systems because it often comes up. For many years I have discussed various rings to enthusiasts for the following reasons. It isn't really that one ring is better than the other. It just really depends more on the situation of the enthusiast is and as a result, both types of rings are very good.

 

I usually suggest that if an enthusiest is imaging, they should go with a dual ring because there may be a need for a bridge plate for an optional guide scope setup, USB device etc. There's just more flexibility for imaging with a double ring. Another important factor is the thickness of the felt lining inside the ring which can have adverse effects for imagers because as the temperatures change, felt tends to settle more if the lining is too soft and too thick. This can also contribute to cone error. So, for a good set of imaging rings, you want to have very thin felt lining or a good, solid felt lining to minimize these effects as much as possible. Tak doesn't use really thin lining but instead, use a very dense and hard type of green felt and Tak does offer some double ring systems if desired and they work amazingly well.

 

Now, I just want to explain something about the physics here. The more narrow the wall a double ring is, the more pressure gets applied to a small area of the optical tube and the harder it becomes to slide the tube forward and back. If the felt is thin, then it also has a tendency to hug around the tube more tightly (a benefit for imagers). Not only that, but if the rings are very narrow and tall, they can (in some circumstances) have a tendency to tilt ever so slightly, making it even harder to slide the OTA forward and back. The tube can also sometimes settle differently in one of the rings compared to the other depending on the balance point.

 

For all of the above reasons, it is almost never easier or simpler to balance an optical tube while using a double ring compared to a clam, particularly while you have to manage two screws at the same time in the dark. Enter the single ring and the visual observer. When the FC100DL first came out, Tak introduced a slightly longer clam ring compared to the one used for the shorter DC and DF models, but, it was later determined that because all of these optical tubes were so narrow and so lightweight, it really wasn't necessary for observers with the DL to use the slightly longer clam ring. As a result, the same 95mm clam ring is perfectly suited for all the DL, DC and DF models. Not only than, but you don't have to contend as much with the issues I mentioned above. Just apply some common sense to the situation.

 

The clam is perfectly fine for the visual applications discussed here and IMO is a more suitable option for visual observers like us. It slides easy and is completely safe while applying some very basic care. If you are switching out heavy eyepieces, all you have to do is loosen the thumb screw ever so slightly and there is little friction to deal with. As a result, the tube moves forward and backward much more easily, especially when switching out heavier eyepieces which I avoid anyway. You can even tilt the tube up or down ever so slight and allow gravity to help do the work. Enthusiasts just need to apply some basic common sense to the situation. I've used countless clam rings for 25 years with all my Tak's and they're the best invention since the wheel. 

 

 


  • John Huntley, Edrow10, waso29 and 5 others like this

#111 Daniel Mounsey

Daniel Mounsey

    Vendor (Woodland Hills)

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 7,868
  • Joined: 12 Jun 2002

Posted 15 January 2020 - 09:12 AM



Thanks to everyone for all the helpful responses waytogo.gif  I decided to go through with placing an order for the FC-100DF optical tube, Takahashi Clamshell ring, and Losmandy 7" dovetail.

Shout out to the guys at Woodland Hills [telescopes.net] for being very helpful applause.gif   Daniel called me this morning and helped me pick the correct clam shell for this model and let me know it would be shipping out today laugh.gif  

I think I'll wait until the scope comes to decide if I want the other items on my Wish List. Those items are the Feather Touch Micro-Pinion Assembly, Takahashi 6x30 Finder Scope, and the Baader ClickLock visual back.

The mounts I am considering are the Vixen Porta II, Stellarvue M2C, TeleVue Gibraltar HD4 [I heard some negative comments about it, but it's a really good looking mount, so I kept it on the bottom of the wish list], iOptron AZ Pro, and the Losmandy AZ8 Dual Saddle. Can anyone recommend on those or know any better ones [under $1000]? I am leaning towards the Stellarvue M2C. I really like the iOptron AZ Pro, but it looks kind of bulky for a "grab & go" mount, plus the Stellarvue is about half the price question.gif

My apologies, I wasn't aware it was you I was talking to. I have so many calls in a day regarding Tak I lose track. foreheadslap.gif


  • rkelley8493 likes this

#112 Hesiod

Hesiod

    Skylab

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,337
  • Joined: 13 Jan 2013

Posted 15 January 2020 - 10:29 AM

It obviously depends on the whole setup but the original 95mm clamshell was equipped with a 3/8" screw upon which I placed a Baader Stronghold mount and this has proven to be a really reliable setup for my imaging ambitions (indeed, having plenty of payload, I "recycled" a 66/400 ED I already owned as guidescope, and this is needlessly heavy)


  • Daniel Mounsey likes this

#113 payner

payner

    Vanguard

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,141
  • Joined: 22 Mar 2007
  • Loc: Bluegrass & Cumberland Valley Regions, Kentucky

Posted 15 January 2020 - 10:33 AM

First, wishing your father a speedy recovery, Daniel.

 

I couldn't agree more on your analysis of Takahashi tube holders and rings. I actually feel my ota are more secure in the 'sleeve' of a clamshell. Something else to consider for those with heavy ota, the Takahashi dual ring tube holders have their hinges free that will open all the way back (~180 degrees from closed) providing a good solution to mount the tube holder/rings on the mount first, then safely position the ota in the cradle. Other rings I have used the hinges only allow the top-half of the rings to open about 90 degrees from the closed position. That makes for a difficult maneuver and likely to cause problems at some point.


  • Daniel Mounsey, Edrow10 and rkelley8493 like this

#114 rkelley8493

rkelley8493

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1,900
  • Joined: 19 Jan 2019
  • Loc: Southeast USA

Posted 15 January 2020 - 11:16 AM

My apologies, I wasn't aware it was you I was talking to. I have so many calls in a day regarding Tak I lose track. foreheadslap.gif

No worries! I appreciate you taking the time to help waytogo.gif

 

Thoughts and prayers to your father for a quick recovery and to your family! 


Edited by rkelley8493, 15 January 2020 - 11:18 AM.

  • Daniel Mounsey and sunnyday like this

#115 rkelley8493

rkelley8493

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1,900
  • Joined: 19 Jan 2019
  • Loc: Southeast USA

Posted 15 January 2020 - 12:16 PM

Alright y'all.. I think I'm going to go with the Stellarvue M2C Mount, but I have a question. I already have a couple of good, solid tripods, one came with my LX90 and the other for my Atlas Pro. Would the M2C Mount head be able to attach to either of these tripods? Stellarvue has this on the information page:

 

"The heavy duty stainless steel tripod has an underside brace that holds eyepieces. The tripod weighs 20 pounds but has a large capacity. It is made by Celestron for the CGEM mount. The attachment bolt is M12 X 1.75."


Edited by rkelley8493, 15 January 2020 - 12:17 PM.

  • Daniel Mounsey and payner like this

#116 Daniel Mounsey

Daniel Mounsey

    Vendor (Woodland Hills)

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 7,868
  • Joined: 12 Jun 2002

Posted 15 January 2020 - 12:31 PM

Wise choice.


  • rkelley8493 likes this

#117 rkelley8493

rkelley8493

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1,900
  • Joined: 19 Jan 2019
  • Loc: Southeast USA

Posted 15 January 2020 - 12:41 PM

Another question.. If the Stellarvue M2C Mount attaches to the CGEM tripod, would it be safe to assume that it would also attach to a Berlebach Uni wood tripod for CGEM mounts?



#118 mikeDnight

mikeDnight

    Apollo

  • ****-
  • Posts: 1,237
  • Joined: 19 Apr 2015
  • Loc: Wild Wild West - North West England

Posted 15 January 2020 - 02:26 PM

As much as I like the Starbeam mounted on my TV85 using any optical or 1:1 projected finder mounted on the clamshell would often put the finder at an inaccessible location or positioned too far from the finder to reach focus or see the projected reticle. A RACI finder near the primary scope eyepiece minimizes movement needed to use the finder reducing strain and improving efficiency of motion conserving energy and Advil / Motrin needed. waytogo.gif  

 

As much as I like the Starbeam mounted on my TV85 using any optical or 1:1 projected finder mounted on the clamshell would often put the finder at an inaccessible location or positioned too far from the finder to reach focus or see the projected reticle. A RACI finder near the primary scope eyepiece minimizes movement needed to use the finder reducing strain and improving efficiency of motion conserving energy and Advil / Motrin needed. waytogo.gif  

I think I must be old fashioned or something as I know right angled finders are quite popular. However they seem a bit counter intuitive to me, as I generally look along the main tube anyway to roughly align it, so it's simple enough for me to look through a straight finder. If both eyes are left open its easy to accurately aim a straight finder. 


  • Steve Allison, rkelley8493 and Ihtegla Sar like this

#119 A Y

A Y

    Explorer 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 76
  • Joined: 27 Jul 2018
  • Loc: Southern California, USA

Posted 15 January 2020 - 02:58 PM

Alright y'all.. I think I'm going to go with the Stellarvue M2C Mount, but I have a question. I already have a couple of good, solid tripods, one came with my LX90 and the other for my Atlas Pro. Would the M2C Mount head be able to attach to either of these tripods? Stellarvue has this on the information page:

 

"The heavy duty stainless steel tripod has an underside brace that holds eyepieces. The tripod weighs 20 pounds but has a large capacity. It is made by Celestron for the CGEM mount. The attachment bolt is M12 X 1.75."

The MECs (the column you have to mount the M2C on) have 4 options:

- 3/8-16 threads for use on photo tripods

- 10mm for Vixen-style tripods

- 12mm for the CGEM, EQ6, etc.

- 5/8-11 for surveyor-style tripods

 

The lower part of the MEC with the tripods threads is replaceable in their later units (there are 3 cap head screws that hold it in instead of some kind of glue), so you can interchange them if you change tripods. I just recently got a part from SV to change mine from a 3/8-16 to a 10mm. I believe your Atlas Pro is an EQ6-class mount? If so, that's a 12mm or M12 thread. The EQ5 and lower mounts use the Vixen-style M10 or 10mm threads.

 

I use an Avalon T-Pod 110, initially with their DM kit with a 3/8-16 screw, but I've since changed it to an M10 screw and north alignment pin for an EQM-35 mount, so that's why I also changed my MEC to M10. The MEC has a little indent to accommodate the north alignment lug on tripods meant for EQ mounts. The tripod is a big component in the mount stability, so don't compromise on that especially with a refractor of that quality!

 

I can also vouch for the Astrodevices Nexus DSC: it's really fast to setup and easy to use. Their encoders are not hard to install in the M2C.


  • rkelley8493 likes this

#120 Daniel Mounsey

Daniel Mounsey

    Vendor (Woodland Hills)

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 7,868
  • Joined: 12 Jun 2002

Posted 15 January 2020 - 04:49 PM

Another question.. If the Stellarvue M2C Mount attaches to the CGEM tripod, would it be safe to assume that it would also attach to a Berlebach Uni wood tripod for CGEM mounts?

Yes, you need the M2C head and MEC012. Make sure you get the MEC012 extension pier whatever you do.


Edited by Daniel Mounsey, 15 January 2020 - 04:50 PM.

  • ken30809 and rkelley8493 like this

#121 Steve Allison

Steve Allison

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,278
  • Joined: 25 Nov 2016
  • Loc: Olympia, Wash. 98502

Posted 15 January 2020 - 04:57 PM

Daniel-

 

I have very much appreciated the telephone advice you have given me on several occasions.

 

My family and I will keep your father in our thoughts and prayers. I wish him a speedy and full recovery.

 

Sincerely,

 

Steve


  • Daniel Mounsey, StarDust1 and rkelley8493 like this

#122 Daniel Mounsey

Daniel Mounsey

    Vendor (Woodland Hills)

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 7,868
  • Joined: 12 Jun 2002

Posted 15 January 2020 - 06:36 PM

You guys are awesome. Thanks very much for the kind words and thoughts, they mean a lot guys. bow.gif


  • RogerLaureys, payner, 25585 and 1 other like this

#123 payner

payner

    Vanguard

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,141
  • Joined: 22 Mar 2007
  • Loc: Bluegrass & Cumberland Valley Regions, Kentucky

Posted 15 January 2020 - 06:49 PM

Daniel: What you're experiencing with a parent is among the most difficult experiences we go through. Prayers to you and dad.


  • Daniel Mounsey, RogerLaureys and rkelley8493 like this

#124 m9x18

m9x18

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,838
  • Joined: 12 Oct 2007
  • Loc: Abilene, Texas USA

Posted 16 January 2020 - 12:37 AM

Daniel: Ditto the thoughts and prayers everyone is sending up for you and your father. 


  • Daniel Mounsey likes this

#125 rkelley8493

rkelley8493

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1,900
  • Joined: 19 Jan 2019
  • Loc: Southeast USA

Posted 16 January 2020 - 11:20 AM

I think I must be old fashioned or something as I know right angled finders are quite popular. However they seem a bit counter intuitive to me, as I generally look along the main tube anyway to roughly align it, so it's simple enough for me to look through a straight finder. If both eyes are left open its easy to accurately aim a straight finder. 

I'm the same way.. I prefer straight thru finders so I can use both of my eyes, that way the magnified image is superimposed on the image from my naked eye.

However, I hardly ever use a finder on my SVA130T. I've gotten pretty skilled at "eye-balling" with that scope on my Atlas AZ/EQ Mount. The only reason I can see for needing a finder on the FC-100 would be for star hopping on a manual mount.

On a side note, this little beauty is out for delivery today laugh.gif I'll post some unboxing photos when it gets here. flash.gif

I probably won't get a first light tonight because I won't get the clamshell and dovetail until tomorrow, and it's been crappy weather for the last week with 2 or 3 more to go until clear skies. But the plus side is that it will be clear for a couple/few nights in a row. 


  • eros312, mikeDnight and Ihtegla Sar like this


CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics